Many are drawn to captivating Lake Garda, taking to its wind-ruffled waters in the north and village- and vineyard-hopping in the south. Surrounded by three distinct regions - Lombardy, Trentino Alto-Adige and the Veneto - there is a wealth of countryside to explore and even if you have been before, there is always something new to find.
We include visits to local gardens, some on their own islands, with manicured lawns, exotic plants, elaborate fountains and an elegant villa or palazzo to boot, that come as a surprise to many visitors. The sloping vineyards belong to some of Italys oldest wine growing families and each sip of Valpolicella, on our included wine tasting with lunch, is part of a rich historical heritage.
The visits to Modena, Italys culinary capital and Vicenza with its 26 World Heritage Sites including architectural wonders by Andrea Palladio make this holiday truly diverse and memorable. We have scheduled the perfect mix of sights, experiences, included meals and drinks as well as time to relax and enjoy what Garda offers in abundance, stunning scenery!
Oberammergau in Bavaria is known throughout the world for its Passion Play, which has been performed every ten years since 1634. The next production will take place in 2020. It is a formidable joint effort by the whole village. For the 2020 production planning will begin in February 2019, when the residents of Oberammergau will grow their hair long and men will stop trimming their beards. Those wishing to play lead roles such as Jesus or Mary will defer marriage, to conform to the casting traditions which are still upheld today.
In April 2019 the actors will be announced and at the beginning of November more than 2,000 residents, chosen to take the parts of Jesus, Mary, Caiaphas, Pilate, Judas, John, the priests and soldiers, the people of Jerusalem and the 470 children who participate in the Play - will work on their scenes with the director. Under the musical director, 120 choir members and the 70 members of the Passion Play orchestra will practise and polish the musical compositions of the composer, Rochus Dedler of Oberammergau. Many visitors are astonished by the powerful role that music plays within the performance. Almost a third of the five-and-a-half hour performance is taken up by musical compositions, almost equivalent to a complete oratorio.
This meticulous preparation over 12 months is carried out in order to accomplish what the Evangelist Luke described at the end of his narration of the Passion of Christ: When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their chests and went away.